Blog Entry

GM for a day: Lowell/Teixeira "Not about money"

Posted on: December 4, 2008 1:44 pm
Edited on: December 4, 2008 1:49 pm
 

I know that Major League Baseball is a business, but I also know that sometimes the game and the players in it have more at stake than just the bottom line.

I love the thought of having Mark Teixeira in the Red Sox lineup next year and with the winter meets right around the corner that might very well become a reality very soon. But at what cost?

When I say cost, I'm not referring to a dollar amount, but I'm speaking about the way the organization will be remembered for years to come. With the signing of Teixeira the Red Sox will most likely be shipping Mike Lowell off elsewhere as Youk makes the move to third. This is the same Mike Lowell who was the MVP of the 2007 World Series and signed with the Sox for $10 million less than he could have elsewhere.

Are we so fickle that we are willing to turn our back and end a relationship with a person who was our hero only a year ago and threw away $10 million to maintain this relationship? He said he stayed because of the teammates, the fans, and the town. He stayed because we are supposedly the best fans and organization in baseball, and if we want to prove that and earn the respect of players around the league so they might do the same as Lowell did, we shouldn't settle for throwing Lowell out the door.

Signing the best free agent out there doesn't make us a good team, having the right mix of guys that complete their roles perfectly is the formula for success, and Lowell is one of the pieces that helps the Red Sox succeed. Keeping that in mind, I'll leave you with Lowell's words from a year ago when he signed his 3 year $37 million deal with Boston:

"I have financial security so I'd like to believe I'm not all about money," Lowell said. "I feel like I'm more of a baseball player than a businessman. I kind of weighed where I felt comfortable, where I thought I could produce the best with the team that has a chance to win a world championship, and it was Boston. On top of that, we just won and I think I played with a set of teammates that are unparalleled and with a manager the same way and with a fan base that's unbelievable.

"I think all of those came into play. I really don't believe that everything should be about money. I've had teammates in the past that have gone to other places and sometimes they have second thoughts because they took more money elsewhere. I just didn't think my happiness should just be bought by dollars."

Doesn't that sound like a guy you want playing for your team?

Comments

Since: Dec 22, 2008
Posted on: December 22, 2008 1:09 am
 

GM for a day: Lowell/Teixeira "Not about money"

Texiera's going to the Yankees. You 'tards are wasting your breath. Why would anyone want to play in  that plywood dump anyhow?  Your 15 minutes of fame are up.  Yanks will win the east by 9 games this year and the perennial loser Red sux will resume there natural position. Number 27, 28, 29 next 3 years.



Since: Dec 20, 2008
Posted on: December 20, 2008 1:16 pm
 

GM for a day: Lowell/Teixeira "Not about money"

This is the Red Sox we are talking about, of course they can afford him.  Seems like Boras is playing games right now.  Either the Nationals are offering close to $200 Million or he is bluffing the Sox in hopes of getting more money out of it.  Teixeira is one of the best firstbaseman in baseball, hance the reason why the Sox would move Youk to third if they could get him, and he is the premiere power hitter on the market this winter and I have heard there is not much coming up in the next couple of years as far as power guys go.  I think the Sox should do everything possible to aquire him without getting into a bidding war against themselves for his services.  Boras has done this before and the Sox have not bitten.  It is going to be interesting to see how all of this unfolds, is he going to be a man of his word and head East and play for a winner or take all of the money and head to the Nationals?  But if I am Theo Epstien it is a business and at some point you have to do what is best for 2009 and long term, signing Mark Teixeira and trading away Mike Lowell will do both.  Similar to Coco Crisp, if the Sox do get Teixeira I hope they send Lowell somewhere where he will play everyday, but not just to a team that is a winner.  It is going to be scary to see Ellsbury, Pedrioa, Papi, Teixeira, Bay, Youk, and Drew in the same line up.  Bring back Tek, and go with Lowrie and this offense could be as good as they were in 2003 & 2004.



Since: Dec 20, 2008
Posted on: December 20, 2008 12:11 pm
 

GM for a day: Lowell/Teixeira "Not about money"

This is a business. Texiera is a GREAT hiiter. He is a better hitter than either Lowell or Youk. I love Youk and Lowell. They are good hitters, very good fielders and great clubhouse guys. Textiera is an outstanding fielder. In 2008 he had a .998 Fld% and only made two errors (fileding not throwing). He also reported to be a very good clubhouse guy. If we can afford him, we should get him.



Since: Dec 20, 2008
Posted on: December 20, 2008 11:08 am
 

GM for a day: Lowell/Teixeira "Not about money"

I agree with you to a point.  I do not feel the Sox would be turning their backs on Mike Lowell or becoming a horrible franchise by trading Lowell.  The Sox feel that Teixeira is their type of player, like they did about JD Drew, and he is younger than Lowell.  Mike Lowell is 34 and coming off of hip surgery, maybe it is the best time to bring in a guy like Teixeira and start moving forward.  David Ortiz isn't getting any younger and is coming off of a injury plagued down season.  Teixeira would provide that over lap of Papi and young players.  And not let them all get old at the same time like the Yankees.  If Mike Lowell is going to be 100% in 2009 then I am all for keeping Lowell and Youk and save $200 million.  I would like to see the team focus more attention and getting another arm in the rotation and finding a catcher of the future.  I personally feel the line up is solid enough if everyone is healthy.  If Lowell and Ortiz can get back to 2007 form the Sox are still a scary line up with Varitek in it hitting 8th or 9th.  Jason Bay will provide as much power as Manny did in 07 & 08, which is basically 30-35 home runs and 100+ RBI's.  They are a very good defensive team and Lowrie at short is an upgrade over Lugo.  Another arm, like a Jake Peavy, would put Boston over the top and the favorite to win the East.  They may be the most well balanced team in the AL.  The Yankees making a splash by signing Sabathia and Burnett has not impressed me.  Burnett is a 6 week DL stint waiting to happen and Sabathia is a 300 pound pitcher that has thrown over 500 innings the last two seasons and has been even worse in October the last two seasons.  I honestly think the Brewers hurt him last year by running him out there every three days pitching complete games.  I can not understand why New York outbid the Brewers by $61 million to get this guy.  Basically if Lowell is back to his 25 home run, 90 RBI, gold glove defense in 2009 the Sox will not have made a mistake by walking away from the Teixeira talks.  Just because you spend big money doesn't mean you got better.



Since: Jan 7, 2007
Posted on: December 20, 2008 9:55 am
 

GM for a day: Lowell/Teixeira "Not about money"

A lotg of short-term memory on display here on this board by Sox fans. Trading Lowell wouldn't be the 1st time they traded away someone who took the home-town discount. How about Bronson Arroyo?

This is from his Wiki page: "Before the 2006 season, Arroyo signed a 3 year $11.2 million contract with the Red Sox. Arroyo said the deal was a "Hometown discount" and agreed to the terms against the advice of his agent. Arroyo was later traded during spring training of the 2006 season for Cincinnat Reds outfielder Willy Mo Pena"

At least Lowell got tho play at least a year of his "Home-town" contract.

There is very little chance the Sox can deal Papi. He has to prove he is healthy first, which may take some time. Wrist injuries tend to really sap the power from players. Good examples of this recently are Nomar, Sheffeild and Matsui. Each had wrist injuried and really never regained the power they had prior to injury. But, the most glaring reasson Papi won't be traded is because he has full veto power of any trade involving him because he is a 10 and 5 guy.

As a Phillies fan 1st who has Sox season tix I was very glad Phils didn't sign Lowell last year. Don't get me wrong though, I wanted the Phils to sign him but 4 years guaranteed was way too much of a risk for him. I was hoping for 2 with 3rd option. I still wish the Phils had him its easy to be glad they don't with his present injury status. I think his trade value is almost nil unless the sox pick up huge portion of contract a'la Renteria.




Since: Nov 19, 2008
Posted on: December 16, 2008 8:06 pm
 

GM for a day: Lowell/Teixeira "Not about money"

The Yankees, on the other hand, are deeply committed to their players Have you asked Bernie Williams about this lately? Of course not because it doesn't go with your ridiculous arguement. How about Tino Martinez? Seems to me he was a key member of a "few" championships but as soon as the Great Giambini became available, Martinez became expendable. Sound familiar?? How about David Wells who loved pitching in NY but was trashed after he was shipped off to Toronto. There's some "loyalty" for you! David Cone? Dumped. Get your head out of the sand and at least pretend to be somewhat objective. All GOOD teams, including the Yankees, try to sign GOOD players and let players who are no longer needed go. Rivera has proven to be a great signing but I guarantee you that if the Yankees could pull Posada's contract back they would do it in a heartbeat. They signed him as a catcher, not a DH/1st baseman.



Since: Apr 22, 2008
Posted on: December 16, 2008 1:30 pm
 

GM for a day: Lowell/Teixeira "Not about money"

You do you realize that you have pretty much abandoned all of your past heroes without so much of a second look. Pedro, Nomar, Manny have all at one point been the face of this franchise

1. Nomar explicitly stated that he was sick of the media in Boston and wanted a trade, 2. Pedro was offered a four year deal from the Sox when he was a free agent, but he took a five year deal from the Mets worth the same amount per year, 3. Manny went to great lengths to be traded (he even held up a sign in the dugout one night that read "please trade me for Brett Favre"). So whereas all of these players not only wanted to, but went above and beyond to show that they didn't want to be in Boston, Lowell has said he would give up millions to stay.

The former "captain" is hoping to resign with the Sox but I can assure you he wont. Why? Because it would be stupid...This is what seperates the Yankees from the Red Sox,

So the Red Sox do smart things and the Yankees don't...I can agree with that. But in all seriousness, the Yankees didn't sign Rivera and Posada out of loyalty. Even in their old age there weren't any better options on the market when those two players were free agents. If the Red Sox don't find a better option, they will absolutely go back to Varitek.

I do agree that the Sox can be very ruthless when it comes to managing their roster, but I'm saying in this case a little compasion is really the right road to take.




Since: Sep 12, 2008
Posted on: December 15, 2008 11:46 pm
 

GM for a day: Lowell/Teixeira "Not about money"

"Are we so fickle that we are willing to turn our back and end a relationship with a person who was our hero only a year ago and threw away $10 million to maintain this relationship?"

Umm...yes?
You do you realize that you have pretty much abandoned all of your past heroes without so much of a second look. Pedro, Nomar, Manny have all at one point been the face of this franchise. Yet as soon as they were expendable you kicked them to the curb as if all their years and devotion to the club meant nothing. Obviously none of them requested a paycut to stay with the team but at the same time, how can you say the Lowell will ever mean as much to the Sox as Pedro or Nomar or yes, even Manny did in their heyday? Boston is notorious for its cold-hearted approach to signing players. That's not to say it's a bad thing, it's just saying that legacy and respect for the players that have gotten them to where they are take a back seat.

The Yankees, on the other hand, are deeply committed to their players (I understand that I run the risk of being laughed off these boards after writing this sentence but here me out). Take Rivera for example: in 2007 he was 38 years old. Rivera, one of the best Yankees of all-time, desperately wanted to play for the Yankees. But knowing that K-Rod would be available a mere year later, the Yankees were reluctant to sign this aging veteran. It was a tough decision for the Yanks but eventually, the Yankees put up the cash and signed Mo to a three year deal worth more than any other reliever in history. Was it the smartest move? Probably not. But in order to secure Rivera's lifelong legacy as a Yankee, the Yankees paid the price.

Or how about Jorge Posada? Despite putting up a career year, last year Posada was 36 years old and seeing the end of his career. He didn't deserve a long-term deal. But instead of sending him packing and thanking him for his time, we re-signed him. And while we initially told him that we would not give him anything more than a three-year deal worth 40 mill, we eventually budged and coughed up an extra year and 12 million dollars in order to keep him in pinstripes. Posada will be 40 by the time he finishes his contract. For a catcher, 40 comes with an AARP membership. Yet despite this, the Yankees signed him anyway and did what they had to do to ensure that Jorge was a lifelong Yankee.

Right now, Varitek is in an incredibly similar position. He is 36 years old and looking for a new contract. The former "captain" is hoping to resign with the Sox but I can assure you he wont. Why? Because it would be stupid. He put up absolutely abismal numbers last year and is not showing any signs of turning it around. To put it bluntly, he's old and taking up precious space on the Red Sox roster. This is what seperates the Yankees from the Red Sox, for better or for worse.

So in my opinion, of course you want the player that wants to be in your town. I don't think any of the above examples wanted to play anywhere else. The problem is, when players are not as selfless as Lowell do what is expected of them and ask for more money, the team is faced with the decision of how much they value what they have done for the team. For the Red Sox, it's not about what you have done for me as much as it what you will do for me. This is not to say that kind of logic is wrong, but from a Yankee standpoint, I'm just not sure I'd be willing to sacrifice the legacy of a player like Jeter in order to obtain another ring. But hey, that's just me. I know a lot of hungry Yankee fans out there.



Since: Apr 22, 2008
Posted on: December 12, 2008 2:16 pm
 

GM for a day: Lowell/Teixeira "Not about money"

Soxfan-

I appreciate your enthusiasm, and a lot of your ideas are valid ones. There are a few holes however:

Can we entertain the idea of the Sox moving Kevin Youkilis to shortshop if they sign Mark Teixiera?

Simple answer, no. Yes, Kevin Youkilis was able to make the move from third base to first base, but the corner infield spots are very similar to play. Moving from short to third like Cal Ripken or Alex Rodriguez is even a feasible move...but playing short requires a skill set (agility, quickness) that Youk doesn't have.

Sign Ivan Rodriguez and Re-sign Jason Varitek.

The Sox think Varitek is asking for too much money...Ivan Rodriguez is asking for more. To sign both these guys would cost Boston around $27 million for just next season. They would be better off grabbing Varitek for $14 mil as well as a cheaper back up, or, if they are to spend money, it should be on a young, future of the franchise type.

Trade Manny Delcarmen

You can't trade such good, young talent. This is Manny's breakout year where he becomes a dominant set up guy and Okajima becomes the lefty specialist instead of the 8th inning guy.

SP- Daisuke Matsuzaka, Josh Beckett, Jon Lester, Tim Wakefield, Clay Buchholz and Justin Masterson (6-man rotation)

The Red Sox will never go to a 6-man rotation. They want Beckett, Matsuzaka, and Lester to get as many starts as possible to give them a better shot at winning. I think Masterson will stay in the pen, Buchholz starts in AAA, and the sox sign a fifth starter for cheap.

Sign Omar Vizquel

During Pedroia's first season everyone was saying that the Sox should either send him down to the minors or get a more experienced guy to platoon with him...the Sox let him play and he turned out all right. I think somewhere along the line you just have to let guys like Lowrie play. Yeah, he'll struggle at times, and I'm not saying he's going to turn out like Pedroia and win MVP, but he'll be a very servicable SS (probably better than Vizquel).



Since: Aug 22, 2006
Posted on: December 12, 2008 1:23 pm
 

GM for a day: Lowell/Teixeira "Not about money"

Can we entertain the idea of the Sox moving Kevin Youkilis to shortshop if they sign Mark Teixiera? I know he might not be as quick as shortshops are supposed to be ,but then we can sign Mark Teixiera without trading anyone away. Then Lowell can have some time to heal from the bumps and bruises from last season. To start the season, we can have Kevin at third, Jed at short and Mark at first. Then once Mike is healthy to play at 100%, we move Jed onto the bench, Kevin to short, Mike back in at third and keep Mark at first. We might give up a few ball that faster shortshops couldve gotten, but Kevin is excellent at defense and adapting to playing different positions (he did come up through the system as a third baseman). I say try it out, then if it doesn't work, make a roster change.

On the topic of roster change, I would make a couple moves before the season starts. Such as:

Re-sign Jason Varitek - We all know the Sox need him regardless of how bad his offense was last season. He is heart and soul of the Red Sox. He's done so much for the Sox, they owe it to him to bring him back.

Sign Ivan Rodriguez - Pudge was bad with the Yankees and the Tigers last year. So what? Jason can't play everyday anymore. I say split the catching duties 60/40 with Tek getting 60% of the time because he is their leader. Sign him to a one year deal with a team option on a second year.

Sign Omar Vizquel - Even if the Sox don't move Kevin to shortshop, Jed needs a teacher. He was great last year but he is not ready to take the position full-time. Omar's production has gone down in years past and also can't play full time. Just like Jason/Ivan, I say split the time 60/40 with Jed getting 60% because he is the future at that position for the Sox. Omar can teach both Jed and Kevin (if he is moved) the ins and outs of playing shortshop.

Sign Gabe Kapler - Love the guy. He'll come cheap and can be a backup outfielder at any of the three positions.

Trade Manny Delcarmen and Julio Lugo - I get scared every single time Manny comes into pitch unless the Sox are down by a lot and I've never been a fan of Julio.

 

So '09 Sox (if we try Youkilis out at shortshop):

C- Jason Varitek (60%) and Ivan Rodriguez (40%)

1B- Mark Teixiera

2B- Dustin Pedroia

SS- Kevin Youkilis

3B- Mike Lowell

LF - Jason Bay

CF- Jacoby Ellsbury

RF- J.D. Drew

DH- David Ortiz

Bench - Jeff Bailey (1B/OF), Omar Vizquel (SS), Jed Lowrie (2B, SS, 3B), Ivan Rodriguez (C), Kevin Cash (C) and Gabe Kapler (OF)

 

SP- Daisuke Matsuzaka, Josh Beckett, Jon Lester, Tim Wakefield, Clay Buchholz and Justin Masterson (6-man rotation)

LR- Michael Bowden and Devern Hansack

MR- David Aardsma, Wes Littleton, Javier Lopez

SU- Ramon Ramirez and Hideki Okajima

CL- Jonathan Papelbon  



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